Friday, August 03, 2007

Nick Starr...

Some of you may not be aware of who he is or what's been going on. I'll do my best.

First, there's this: His personal website & his blog

He's a twentysomething tech/gadget junkie in southern Florida. He has become known online first as a fan of The Dawn & Drew Show and then a guest on the podcast Nobody Likes Onions. He has attended both Podcast Expos and various other podcasting events throughout the country. His motive is only known by him.

He's gotten flack on NLO for lying about who he is and some of his lifestyle choices. He also got flack when he started attacking Keith and the Girl on NLO. Later, they called in and he used a certain comment that Don Imus was kicked off the air for using.

Subsequently, some KATG forum members posted his cell phone number, work number, his parents address, the description of his car and local places he frequents. Every time he changed his cell number they would post his new number. Then he lost his job and some thought it might have been due to all the calls in to his work from KATG fans. I'm not sure that's the case but it's just a view into the way some KATG fans treat enemies of the show.

Keith required him to apologize in three ways before he'd "call off the dogs":
1. Apologize through twitter (which he did)
2. Apologize by calling into the Keith and the Girl show (which he did)
3. Apologize on an episode of Nobody Likes Onions (which he has NOT done)

All of this had calmed down over the last month or so. I felt like he'd put all that behind him so I dropped any grudges I had with him and we were cool again. It's not like we were really friends. We never talked to each other and basically I just went from not liking the guy to not caring.

Then a couple days ago, Nick posted the following posts on

6:44pm August 1, 2007: btw I am pretty drunk already, so consider anything from here on out a drunken Twitter post
7:41pm August 1, 2007: Hrm, there is a nice high skyway bridge nearby...I've heard of plenty of people jumping from it....maybe I should give it a try tonight.
8:01pm August 1, 2007: @briancaldwell nah that's how i am all the time, I just never say the things I am thinking. I've wanted to kill myself since 1st grade.
8:27pm August 1, 2007: @valerieinto what do i have to appreciate? My 4 years w/o a gf, my lack of friends, my 11 months being homeless?
8:54pm August 1, 2007: Why can't life be like high school? Sure life was complicated, but at least I could get a girlfriend:
9:17pm August 1, 2007: Alright I'm out Twitter...time to get a few more drinks and debate jumping from a bridge tonight, Sunshine Skyway Bridge here I come.
9:27pm August 1, 2007: Just paid the toll for the skyway bridge...should I stop at the top? What should I do with my car? I guess leave it there.
9:29pm August 1, 2007: Has there ever been a twitter suicide before? I wonder what I would write as I am falling to my death.
9:31pm August 1, 2007: alright this is it. Parked my car. I wish everyone who ever was nice to me well. See you in the next life

This led to people on the KATG forums and DnDS forums to voice their concerns. Most of the posts were positive and supportive. Police were called, his parents were called and local suicide hotlines were called. People all over were looking for him. Then, this post showed up on from host Dawn Miceli:

As you may of heard already Drew and I are very concerned over our friend Nick Starr and his recent twitter posts. We have been trying to reach him since we were alerted but so far have had no luck. We have been in contact with the highway patrol down there and are anxious to hear of his whereabouts. This is a very, very serious situation and I have been totally disgusted by the heartless comments and the terrible treatment Nick has received from some of those in the podcasting community. Why must some people have to tear others down, to the point of total destruction, before they realize that their behavior could have deadly repercussions? Does it make you feel good hurting other people? Are you truly that pathetic?

We hope that Nick is safe and offer whatever help he needs to get to a better place.

I just pray that it isn’t too late.

I sincerely thank those of you that are sending their love to Nick right now, we all have had our bad moments and sometimes it is the simple act of friendship that saves us.

Kindness is something you can give freely, if you choose to.
-Dawn and Drew

I had a lot of problems with this. First, she had no idea why Nick threatened to kill himself. The only info they had was through his posts on twitter. The only motive Nick implied was "4 years w/o a gf, my lack of friends, my 11 months being homeless." She had no right to just assume that it was due to "some of those in the podcasting community." That's not your place Dawn. Let Nick speak for himself.

Instead, Dawn uses his apparent suicide as a platform to attack the podcasting community. That's just tasteless. You do not use someone's coffin as a soapbox. EVER. Also, name the people Dawn. If you're going to jump all over somebody, have the courage to name them personally or shut your face.

My next problem is the hypocracy. She has the nerve to call people out for treating Nick like shit. Really? Anyone who read his twitters every day could see where this was headed. You did NOTHING to stop the slide. He lives in his car. A decision he made himself but a decision that he apparently regretted more and more every day. Still, he just couldn't stop himself from buying more phones, gadgets, tickets to go out and see you and Drew at various locations. Not once did you take him aside and offer to help? Not once did any minion in the Southern Florida area offer to hang out, buy him a meal, take him out for a night on the town or something...SOMETHING to show that people cared? Last month he slept in his car while Drew and Don slept in comfy hotel beds. That's being a friend? That's how you treat your "minions?" Oh but WE'RE the assholes. No, instead you waited until he basically said he was going to commit suicide. THEN everyone comes running (including me apparently).

Now I never pretended to like Nick. I thought he was a decent guy until last year at the Expo party when his way of saying hello was calling me out. I put that behind me for a while until later when he started lying about who he was and then started attacking Keith and Chemda. For months he refused to apologize and then when he did, he threw Patrick from NLO under the bus. Even still, I put all the past shit behind me and I was cool with Nick. We weren't exactly friends but I no longer had any grudge for him and I hoped any grudge he had towards me was gone as well. Must've been since he asked me to add him to my Pownce page which I did and he reciprocated. Still, even I questioned his choices and confronted him about them on his blog.

It really makes me angry when people feel they're being a good friend by continually supporting you in decisions you make which are obviously not in your best interest. Your friend is homeless by choice and you don't once come to him and try to talk him out of it? You don't even say "Are you sure?" You don't offer him a place to stay? You don't even call to see if he wants to hang out. No, you think that by supporting his every decision that makes you a good friend. NO IT DOESN'T. MY friends question my choices to drink. MY friends even question whether I really should be driving home when it's 10pm. They offer me a place or help paying for a hotel room. I haven't taken them up on it and I've made it home safe but at least they were being good friends. Hypocrites. Everyone one of ya. Sorry but that letter just really got under my skin.

So yeah anyways, as the minutes and hours pass I start to care. I worry. He's a human being. Even if we don't get along and I don't agree with your life choices, I still care about whether you're ok or not. So yeah I shed a few tears worried about the guy. I worried and cared, until I saw this:

So basically not only is he just fine but he's getting a kick out of people worrying about him. So this was just an attention grab? He hasn't been in the spotlight for a while and he misses it. I fell into it. He got me to drop my grudges and try being at least civil. He got me to care and it was all fake. So now I'm feeling pissed but I still don't want to say anything because I'm not sure sure. Perhaps someone hacked his account and put that in there. There's some other explanation or something. So before I pass judgment, how about I make sure I've got all the facts. Then this comes out:

Drew and I just got off the phone with Nick Starr. He is ok and is getting help. He thanks everyone for all their positive well wishes and asks that you will respect his privacy right now as he works through a difficult time.

Please have patience, more information will come as the situation progresses, just know that he is safe and unharmed.

You can continue to send Nick your love and support HERE.

Take care of each other.

Love, Dawn and Drew

Great. He's ok. Now I can breathe a sigh of relief. Now I can say, "Nick, I'm glad you're safe, alive and getting help. Get better soon. We look forward to hearing from you again." I do because I want to know what you were thinking. Why did you think it was ok to play with our emotions like that? You didn't go through with it and instead of just letting us all know you were ok you sat there and watched as all the love came pouring in. You sat there and read our worrying, the tears we've shed, etc. and you not once said "Hey guys, I'm ok." What prompted you to finally call D&D or answer your phone? Was that fun for you? Cause frankly I'm a little pissed off right now. I feel like my emotions have been used and until I hear a satisfactory answer, you and me...we're not OK again. Right now the only positive things I can say about you are that MAYBE this wasn't fun for you and MAYBE you didn't just do this for attention. That you are human and you're breathing. We'll see. Your response will play a large part in my next reply. If this was all just an attention grab, you deserved every single thing the KATG fans and NLO fans said about you...the personal info they shared and exploited...everything.


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